All political parties currently support - or have in the past supported - a fur farm ban
18 July 2018
With the announcement by Solidarity politicians that they will be presenting a "Ban Fur Farming" bill in September, TDs across the country are being contacted and urged to pledge their support for the bill. ICABS can reveal that ALL the political parties either currently support a fur farming ban or have backed a ban in the past.
Scroll down for more details and an action alert and please join us in appealing to all the parties and TDs to unite in finally bringing this shameful industry to an end.
- FINE GAEL -
In 2005, Fine Gael (when in opposition), voted in favour of the Green Party's Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill which attempted to bring the cruel practice to an end. Fine Gael TDs - including the now Tanaiste Simon Coveney and sitting TDs Richard Bruton, Bernard Durkan, Damien English, Paul Kehoe, Enda Kenny and David Stanton - all voted in favour of the proposed legislation. Sadly, the bill was defeated by 67 votes to 50, with 62 Fianna Fail TDs voting against it.
In government following the collapse of the Fianna Fail/Green Party government in 2011, Fine Gael scrapped the phasing out of fur farming, with then Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney stating: "I don't think it's any secret that this isn't an industry that I like, on a personal level, but that doesn't mean I should be banning it."
In 2013, Fine Gael voted AGAINST an amendment to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw fur farming.
In June 2017, Fine Gael TD Noel Rock (Dublin North West) asked Agriculture Minister Michael Creed "his plans to ban fur farming here" and "if rescinding the licences of the remaining fur farms will be considered".
- FIANNA FAIL -
In a coalition government with the Green Party, Fianna Fail in 2009 agreed to a ban on fur farming. A 3-year phase-out of fur farming was included in the Green Party/Fianna Fail programme for government. However, due to the government subsequently collapsing, this ban unfortunately never materialised.
In April 2017, Fianna Fail TD Seán Haughey (Dublin Bay North) asked the Minister for Agriculture "if he will consider revoking licences" for fur farming.
In 2013, current Fianna Fail TD Stephen Donnelly (then a Social Democrats TD) supported an amendment to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw fur farming.
- SINN FEIN -
In June 2018, Sinn Fein's spokesperson on Agriculture, Martin Kenny TD (Sligo-Leitrim) asked the Agriculture Minister about "the rationale behind continued licensing of fur farming here in view of the animal cruelty involved in caging mink in confined spaces without access to water although they are aquatic animals" and "if he has considered banning this activity".
In 2005, Sinn Fein voted in favour of the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill (which was defeated by 67 votes to 50). Speaking during a Dail debate, Martin Ferris TD stated: "I wish to indicate my support, and that of my party, for this Bill. Sinn Féin also supported the extension of the British ban on fur farming when it was voted on in the Northern Assembly. I commend Deputy Boyle and the Green Party for having taken this initiative, which I welcome. It is unacceptable that what are essentially wild animals should be reared and killed simply to supply the demand of a relatively small number of people for clothes made from their hides...They are kept in cramped conditions and are killed in a cruel manner to ensure their pelts are not damaged. The common practice is to gas or electrocute them...The argument that fur farms provide a valuable economic asset does not stand up. The value of exports is around €1.5 million and few people are employed by such farms. Therefore, the argument that fur farming provides employment or is of great benefit to the economy is false."
- LABOUR PARTY -
In 2005, the Labour Party - including current Labour leader, Brendan Howlin TD - voted in favour of the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill (which was defeated by 67 votes to 50).
In its 2006 "21 Point Plan", the party stated: "The Labour Party will enact a Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill to ban fur farming of mink, fox and rabbits and will pay compensation to producers to exit the trade."
In March 2013, the Labour Party did a U-turn, voting AGAINST amendments to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to ban fur farming.
More recently, current Labour TDs have expressed support for a ban. In a Dail Question in February 2017, Brendan Ryan TD asked the Minister for Agriculture "his plans to abolish fur farms here within the lifetime of this Government". Labour TD Jan O'Sullivan (Limerick City) asked about "his plans to cease fur farming practices here further to the European Commission report stating that fur farming impairs mink welfare".
- GREEN PARTY -
The Green Party wants fur farming banned. In 2005 and 2009, the party attempted to secure a ban. Party leader Eamonn Ryan has stated: "Mink are kept in cruel conditions...We can look at the issue of fur farming and refer to the cost, the jobs and the balance sheet, but we cannot ignore the fact that this activity is immoral, unethical and wrong."
- SOLIDARITY / PEOPLE BEFORE PROFIT -
Solidarity TDs Ruth Coppinger and Paul Murphy have this month announced that they will be presenting a "Ban Fur Farming" bill in September. They are urging members of the public to lobby parties and TDs to support the bill. In 2013, Richard Boyd Barrett TD voted in favour of a ban on fur farming. Brid Smith TD has stated: "I am totally opposed to fox hunting, coursing and fur farming."
- INDEPENDENTS 4 CHANGE -
Independents 4 Change (Clare Daly, Mick Wallace, Joan Collins) support a ban on fur farming. In January, Clare Daly TD (Dublin Fingal) urged Minister Creed to "adopt a similar strategy to Norway in order to close Ireland's three licensed mink fur farms in view of the fact that the Norwegian authorities have recently announced a strategy to close down that country's 300 fur farms by 2023". In 2013, Clare Daly and Maureen O'Sullivan presented an amendment to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw fur farming.
- SOCIAL DEMOCRATS -
The Social Democrats support a ban on fur farming. In June 2018, Róisín Shortall TD (Dublin North West, Social Democrats) brought Minister Creed's attention to the fact that "the United Kingdom, Austria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Norway and the Netherlands have banned commercial fur farming on the grounds of animal welfare". She questioned his reason for commercial mink farming to continue here and "if the phasing out of the licensing system for these three remaining farms will be considered". In 2005, Social Democrats TD Catherine Murphy voted in favour of the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill.
- INDEPENDENTS -
Many Independent TDs support a ban on fur farming. In 2013, Independent TDs Maureen O'Sullivan and Clare Daly presented an amendment to the Animal Health and Welfare Bill which sought to outlaw fur farming. Other Independents in favour of a ban are Tommy Broughan, Noel Grealish, Finian McGrath and Denis Naughten. Independent TD Finian McGrath - the current Minister of State for Disability Issues - also supports a ban. As does Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Katherine Zappone TD - in 2016, she stated "I oppose fur farming".
URGENT ACTION ALERT
Sign and share our petition - Ban fur farming in Ireland
Please make contact with your TDs to urge them to support the Solidarity bill. Contact details for TDs can be found at https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/members/tds/?term=/ie/oireachtas/house/dail/32 Also contact the political parties to urge them to back the bill - find contact details at parties.htm
Demand a ban on fur farming in Ireland. Contact Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister Michael Creed now.
Email "Ban fur farming NOW" to Leo.Varadkar@oir.ie, firstname.lastname@example.org, AnimalHealthAndWelfareAct@agriculture.gov.ie
Tel: +353 (0)1 6194000 (Leo Varadkar)
Tel: +353 (0)1-607 2000 or LoCall 1890-200510 (Michael Creed)
Tweet: @campaignforleo @creedcnw Ban fur farming NOW
Comment on Facebook:
Tweet "Ban fur farming NOW" to: @campaignforleo
Dear Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Minister Michael Creed,
I support a total ban on fur farming and an immediate closure of Ireland's fur farms.
In these hellholes, animals suffer a horrendous life of misery before being cruelly gassed to death. There is absolutely no justification for allowing this cruelty to continue.
Please ban fur farming now.
ICABS footage - Victims of Ireland's cruel far farming
NARA footage showing caged mink in a fur farm in Donegal
Mink pulled from cages and thrown into gassing box
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